Anchorage Man Convicted of Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute and Possession of Firearms as a Felon
Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that, on Wednesday, October 19, 2016, a jury in Anchorage found Arnold Wesley Flowers, II, guilty of possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute and possession of firearms as a felon. The jury also agreed that Flowers should forfeit $19,275 in drug proceeds and two firearms.
Flowers, 41, of Anchorage, was by tried before U.S. District Judge Sharon L. Gleason in Anchorage.
Flowers was convicted of one count of possession of cocaine with intent to deliver and one count of being a felon in possession of firearms. Flowers was initially charged by indictment in April 2016, and then charged by a superseding indictment in May 2016, regarding an incident that occurred at his residence located in the Bayshore neighborhood of Anchorage.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kelly Cavanaugh and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Erin Bennett prosecuted the case for the United States.
The evidence established that APD officers arrived at Flowers’ house on March 29, 2016, with a search warrant. When the officers loudly announced their presence and ordered the residents to come out, everyone did except for Flowers. When APD officers went inside to get him, they found him coming from the upstairs master bedroom and bathroom area. In that bathroom, APD Vice Unit detectives found two ounces of cocaine packaged in clear, plastic sandwich baggies clogging the toilet. They also found another four ounces of cocaine – similarly packaged and dripping with water – hidden under the lining of the trashcan next to the toilet.
In Flowers’ adjacent master bedroom, detectives found two portable safes that held a total of $28,000 in cash. Each safe also held a loaded firearm: one Smith & Wesson .40 caliber handgun and one Glock 9 mm handgun with an extended magazine. One of the safes also smelled distinctly of cocaine. In the top drawer of a dresser in that bedroom, detectives found drug packaging materials: three boxes of sandwich baggies, a bag of rubber bands, and counterweights for balancing digital scales. The jury heard evidence that digital scales are used to weigh illegal drugs for sale. The drawer also had that distinct cocaine smell. In the kitchen, detectives found another box of sandwich baggies next to a digital scale.
The jury also heard evidence that Flowers had $1,275 in cash in the front pocket of his pants during the search. Flowers maintained that the cash in his pocket and his safes derived from sales of high-end watches. However, during the search of the residence, the APD officers did not find any watch inventory or documents that would support that Flowers was actively engaged in the sale of watches.
At the time of the search, Flowers had previously been convicted of a felony crime punishable by more than one year of imprisonment and was prohibited from the possession of firearms or ammunition.
Flowers and his wife, Miranda Flowers, await trial on charges of wire fraud. That trial is scheduled to commence in U.S. District Court in Anchorage, Alaska, on December 5, 2016.
Ms. Loeffler commended the Anchorage Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, the State of Alaska Division of Insurance, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations Section for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution and conviction of Flowers. The Municipality of Anchorage has partnered with the U.S. Attorney’s Office since 2007 to address violent crimes and drug crimes by supplying prosecutorial resources to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Ms. Bennett is an Anchorage municipal prosecutor.